Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

We will be ringing in the New Year at the Fallons, well if we make it to midnight ;)

My big plans for tomorrow and Friday include my family, a fire and cozy clothes. Ryan heads back to work on Saturday night, the kids to school on Monday, so I am planning to cram in the most quality time I can.

I hope the New Year is a good one. There will be many changes, and I hope they are for the good. The usual suspects, health and money are key concerns, and under health I list sanity!

Happy New Year all, may 2009 be filled with joy and happiness.

Family fun times 2

So we realized that a certain store the girlies have gift cards for is going out of business while at the mall, with no gift cards. Em and her girls are coming over, she is leaving Declan here with Ryan and Gray and we are heading down to do the girl thing. Being that the options are limited, and everything is 50% off, all four girls should get a ton of junk for the 70 bucks in gift cards.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Super duper family fun day

Yes that is right, the whole tribe is venturing out into the big world for a day of family fun....if we can get ourselves motivated :)

We will eat lunch at home I think, then off to the bank (OK that is only fun for the grownups), then we will go to Friendly's for ice cream to give us energy, then to the mall so Grayson can use his Build a Bear gift card and the girls can use their Claire's gift cards, I think Ryan will use his Teavana gift card his lovely wifey got him too! Then a nice drive to the farm to gather our milk, then home to play the Wii and watch movies and hang about. Super fun, if only everyone would get dressed!

Monday, December 29, 2008

What a nice afternoon

The whole family did some cleaning and we have had a really nice afternoon. Not having work or school, I have actually taken some time to relax. I could get used to this!


We are trying to clean up the aftermath of Christmas and a week of company, and the tribe is revolting. I just want to make a dent, heavy duty work will happen next week when they are back at school and I am still off work. For today, I need to finish the cleaning and start undecorating which is so depressing. I also need to fold a million loads of laundry, bleck.

On the positive side, I hope to get granola made today if I have enough honey and I am making a nice dinner of pork roast, some of our canned apples, potatoes, veggies and popovers...mmm. Tomorrow I promised the kiddos that we could go to the mall so they can spend some of the gift certificates that are burning holes in their pockets. We are also running to the farm, so if I am out of honey I guess I can get some there.

If only I could inspire them to get moving.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

An empty house

All the company left, and I am more than relieved! A full week of people is just too much and makes me tired and crabby! I am not sure what will happen when MIL is here full time, but having to be on good behavior is draining and depressing.

For now, I will sit here at 4 am and wish my husband would stop snoring and that we all will make it to church in the morning. I really want to go there, maybe get lunch out as a family, come home and veg for the day. The cleaning up of the house can begin Monday, along with the undecorating and packing up of Christmas goodies. For tomorrow, church, my family and rest, that is all I want.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Year's resolutions

We are getting close to that infamous time a year when everyone makes goals and promises that they cannot meet or keep. Me,I try to make changes at odd times of the year, there is a lot less pressure. However, we are gearing up for some mega changes here in our tribe, so I feel there are some goals I need to work on.

The first is patience, and I need a wagon full of it! I have a lot going on, and sometimes I skim over the positive and only see the negative, or I don't even stop to process it all. I really need to work on this, and I am really trying...I practiced all day yesterday on my mother in law!

Letting things go. OK, so I cannot let much go since most days are jam packed, and the chosen thing to let go is usually laundry. I need to let go not of tasks, but of feelings and events. I think there will be a purge post coming soon and then I will need to put all those bad feelings to bed.

More local, more organic, more from scratch. We were doing so very well, and then fall hit and Haven was going through her diagnosis, and things just never settled into a comfortable routine. I need to cook more from scratch, it should be seven days a week and we are only at about five. I need to depend more on my stockpile and work to add to it even during the winter months. Ryan and I will be planning the garden next week, so once that is together I will share. Again we will only grow organically, and I am hoping for a bigger success this year.

I need to source new farms and suppliers. There is more we can get locally, such as grains, and I need to locate a source! I also need to bake more bread, I am hoping once the company leaves that I can get back in the habit of baking 2 loaves a week. It is just so much better for everyone. We also need to make more granola so the kids have that as a choice instead of boxed cereal!

So those are some of my plans. Ryan and I want to do chickens, however I am not sure this is the year to start...more info on why coming soon.

Friday, December 26, 2008

New blog

OK, since I fear I will have a lot to say once my mother in law moves in, I created a new location to purge my thoughts:

Visit at your own risk, it ain't pretty.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

They were very excited this morning

Can you tell?????

Merry Christmas from our tribe!

Its 2am on Christmas

and no the kids don't have me up :)

I have been sleeping so badly lately, so when I woke up, I just came downstairs so I won't bother anyone. Also, the wacky weather is making my poor skin dry and I am a bit scratchy. Ah well, maybe I will doze down here, or I will be taking a very long nap tomorrow :)

Here is to hoping there is a pile of prezzies under the tree and a glorious Christmas morning for all!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

I may need a new blog

So my mother in law is here and she is making me crazy. How am I supposed to survive when she lives here? I like doing my own thing, having space and running the house my way. She isn't bad, just throws a wrench in everything. I am just ready to cry and I think I will be starting another blog to give me a place to bitch and moan.

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Today is my husband's 32nd birthday!

He is a super dad and husband, and we are so lucky to have him in our lives. Happy birthday honey, we all love you loads and loads and loads!!!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


We JUST walked in the door. I left here with the kids at 2:30 and the ride to the airport should have taken about and hour and a half, it took three. The ride home also took three plus a stop for the poor kids to pee. I deserve a medal.

Update, the eye is over

My Mother in Law (yes the one moving in) is such a mess that she MISSED her flight here. Yes she MISSED the flight that we paid for and booked and the airport is only 15 minutes from her house! My poor husband, who works overnight, stayed late at work to pick her up at 1 and I just had to call and tell him she won't land until 4. The airport is an hour and a half from our house and he works tonight and leaves at 9 when is he supposed to sleep?

So I told him to come home and sleep, I am waiting for the Comcast guy who will hopefully be here well before 3 when I will need to leave. I will need to pack all three kids into the car to drive an hour and a half north to pick up MIL to turn around and drive home in rush hour traffic. Sounds like a blast huh. Can we say annoyed?

We are sitting in the eye of the storm....

My parents left an hour ago, and my mother in law will be here in about 3 hours.The kids and I are enjoying the relative calm and quiet, they are playing, I have gotten some cleaning done and the Comcast guy is coming to make my new HD TV in my room work (thanks Mom and Dad!!!)

We are lounging in our jammies, enjoying a nice fire and just playing and relaxing. Tomorrow is my husband's birthday, so we will have a special dinner for him and then go to church. The following day is Christmas of course, and my brother in law and Kristien will be here that evening. They will be here a few days, and hubby is off work until January 3rd!!!

I guess I should put clothes on, the Comcast guy probably doesn't want to hang with me in my PJs. I am also going to start the soup for dinner, it should be smelling great in here soon!

Monday, December 22, 2008

The holidays are well underway

We have had my parents here since Saturday, and my sister was here that day as well. The kids have been having so much fun playing with Nana and Papa and I know they will be a little sad when they leave tomorrow, but no worries...Grandma comes in the afternoon! Then on Christmas Uncle Matt and Kristen come and we will have the Fallon's over with the whole crew on the 26th. A full week of Christmas and Hanukkah fun!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

It must be almost Christmas

because Grayson is sick! This is the third year in a row, and while last year took the cake with the hospitalization a week before Christmas, he still couldn't give me the year off! The kids all have had bad coughs for a week, so I didn't think too much of it. This morning he began having the coughing fits with deep wheezy inhalations...nice. So I gave him a breathing treatment, and after his treatment, he laid on the couch for an hour straight...hmmmm,not like my crazy busy four year old. He was all bundled up and I could see the blazing red ears, fever. He is now on Advil and feeling a bit better, but we will be on twice a day breathing treatments and looking for symptoms of severe asthma just to be safe.

Merry Christmas :)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Let the craziness begin

today begins our week O'Christmas. Everyone should be here around 3, so we still have a lot to do. Someone needs to go get the girlies who slept at Emily's and stop at the store for the four things I forgot yesterday. The whole downstairs needed a once over and a good vacuum. The upstairs needs a once over. I need to get cracking on the cooking, and then around 1,I will get everything set up on the pretty platters and all. Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Need to really feel something?

Go on over to Casey's blog and watch the video. It is very moving and I am thankful that she shared. Hug everyone you love a bit tighter.

The worst thing that can happen

when you are motivated to scrub the house from top to bottom, is for the power to go out! We lost power this morning as I was just getting into the groove, and it has thrown me way off. I don't want anyone to misunderstand, I think I keep a clean home, sometimes a little more cluttered than I would like (thanks hubby and three kids for that) but albeit clean. Yet when my mother comes, we need a new level of clean, it needs to be sterilized and perfect. We live in our house, someone is always here, so there is always stuff about. Cleaning and organizing, while they fill my heart with joy, do not do the same for the rest of the tribe. They are not so helpful and have been known to mess up the very room I just cleaned.

Anyway, I have scrubbed the kitchen, and now have a mass of stuff to put away. I also have my oven cleaning, I hate my stove and am coveting a new one, but for this Christmas, I still have old unpredictable. Still on the list, to do some grading for FT school, do laundry, organize the extra stuff from the kitchen, vacuum both levels, clean the kid's bathroom, steam clean, clean up the mudroom and mop. Hopefully husband will jump on board and help out soon.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I am not an early adopter

but I made the switch to Facebook. Change and I are not good friends, but still I am trying. So far I like it, I found some old friends from HS and I had a lovely chat with Rachel last night, that alone is worth it!

Today I have Maggie most of the day, she has been partying all night with her poor mom and she has a nasty cough. It is better she be here with us instead of at the germy school in Killi and Declan's classrooms, plus they have CCD and I am sure an hour in the car will make Emily insane.

The best part of the day will be dinner tonight. I told Killi a few weeks ago that we should go to the Japanese steakhouse for her birthday...I was kidding, but she liked that idea and that is where we are going. It is so much fun to have ten people to celebrate together, I know the kids get a real kick out of it, so we will be enjoying yummy food for dinner!

Now I need to go do some work, this house needs a cleaning!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Today's update

OK, so the day did get better. When I went in to get Gray the kids were all inside a big train (The Polar Express) that they had walked all over the school in. They were super cute and Grayson was so excited that I saw him as the train!

Then we went to meet Maggie and Emily for lunch, but the place we planned on going wasn't open. It turned out great since we tried a new pub place, I think it was the Firken Bulldog(?) and the food was FANTASTIC!!!

I came home and gushed about how tasty the food was, and I am hoping to convince my parents to take us there for dinner on Monday :)

On our way home, Gray and I made a quick stop at the grocery store, then home to sit on our butts...well, I worked a little. I decided that the house cleaning can wait until tomorrow. I can get up and work before my afternoon crash at 2 and I am sure I will get a lot more done. All I need to do tonight is make dinner, help the girls make ornaments for their teachers and wrap teacher presents and put away all the clothes that were folded last night.

I just want to say

that so far today just totally blows and stinks and is in now way good.

I have already had a breakdown, and been hung up on during it, TWICE!

I have a raging headache which has made me sick to my stomach, and while feeling that way, I came home to dog pee on the carpet that I had to clean and a sink full of nasty dishes I had to do.

I have to be in my car in 15 minutes so I can do my work call from the car. I haven't eaten yet today nor have I taken anything for the headache, and I won't have time to. Then I will sit in front of the preschool, doing a work call, feeling like ass, so I can get my sweet son.

The end...and I quit.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Today is making me tired!

We had a busy day. Remember when I said I was going to stay home, clean the house and hang in my PJs all day? Nope.

Gray and I met Emily and Maggie for lunch (thanks Em!) then Emily had a meeting so the littles and I took off to go to the farm. It was doomy and gloomy so the ride was not fun, but the littles were good and we made it back safe and sound. When we got home, I baked off the cookies for Haven's class, and Emily and I tried out our new air popper (I got one for myself and one for Em for Christmas) and it was supper yummy!

Now dinner is cooking, work is done, and I still have a ton of work to do around here. Maybe tonight I will finally get all that laundry fold...hahahaha.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Odd sayings from my boy

He just came downstairs crying that he can't Feep (Sleep). So I sit him on the couch, and he says "I wish I had been born normal." I am not sure how to respond!

Making a dent

I got a number of items on my list done today, and my plan tomorrow is to just keep chipping away!

My big plans for tomorrow involve wearing my PJs all day, clean, do laundry and bake cookies. That is about it, except maybe I will make a decent dinner too since the family had leftovers tonight ;)

Buried alive

I am feeling as though the house today is eating me alive! It is messy, but not so bad that it can't be fixed, the problem is I am just so tired and yucky lately that it seems to be a much bigger task. Add to this that my parents and sister arrive Saturday, parents stay until the morning of the 23rd, then mother in law shows up that afternoon, and the rest of that side shows up late on Christmas. We will have a full week of company,and that my friends, is a lot!

So I have my list of to do's, and I will start cracking away at them. First and foremost is to switch laundry. Then I need to get the cookies ready for Haven's Girl Scout party. Then I must make the sugar cookie dough for the cookies for Haven's class,I want those done so I can finally clear the kitchen of all the cookie making paraphernalia. Also on today's agenda, dust the family room and straighten the living room, plus I must work early so I can head upstairs tonight when the kid go to be and fold fold fold clothes.

The task that is causing me the most stress is the wrapping of presents. Tomorrow I will take care of my hubby, niece, nephew, mom, mother in law and kid's teachers. Doing my kids is a problem. On Wednesday night, Ryan and I need to get an inventory and I need to gather all of the stocking stuffer things so I can figure out what is for Hanukkah and what is for stockings! Then we will probably wrap like crazy on Friday night since the girls are sleeping over at Emily's and Gray goes to sleep well. We will take stuff down, wrap it, put it back up, just like every year. The stocking stuffers get wrapped in tissue paper and each kid's stuff is bagged up separately to make it easy that night. Every year I dread the wrapping, it takes so long and is such a process, but I love the reaction on Christmas morning!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The soup is AMAZING

So I thought I would share the recipe. What you need: a chicken carcass, two cups cooked chicken, 2 onions, a few good handfuls of carrots,bay leaves, salt, pepper,a potato, butter, olive oil, half and half, half a lemon, flour, and an Uncle Ben's wild rice mix.

To make the broth, boil a chicken carcass in enough water to fully cover, with an onion cut in half skins still on, a handful of carrots, four bay leaves, salt, pepper and half a lemon (trust me on this.)

Boil and boil and boil until the broth is a rich color, smells amazing and has reduced by a third. Drain the odds and ends out and reserve the broth.

In a pot, add a good knob of butter and a swirl of olive oil. Finely dice an onion, peel a potato and finely dice and add both to the pot. Then cut carrots into bite size pieces and throw into the pool. Saute everything for about 15 minutes stirring well and don't let it get brown. Add a few pinches of kosher salt and a 1/4 cup of flour, cook all together well to create a nice roux. Add the broth back in and add your cooked chicken (I always have some in the freezer leftover from roast chicken). Cook on a low simmer for about an hour. Add in a cup to cup and a half of half and half, a few good turns of fresh ground pepper and the season packet from and Uncle Ben's wild rice box(ours was roasted chicken) Cook about 15 minutes, stir in the rice and let it all come together. Adjust seasoning as needed.

Make some baking powder biscuits and you are all set.

My cookie press hates me

and I think the fireplace does as well, both have been giving me a hard time today!

However, all the thumbprints are done as are the spritz cookies. Broth has been strained and is now becoming soup and is simmering away on the stove. Dishes are washing and while I am guessing the family won't be getting yeast rolls, they will get biscuits which will make them happy.

I am just ready to be done cooking, I feel like I spent the entire day standing in my kitchen, but the results are worth it. I still have more cookies to make this week, but they shouldn't be as time consuming.

Getting in the groove

OK, so I think I am starting to like this break thing! Right now all I have is FT school, which is a dream! It is not quite 11:30 here and my house smells fantastic. I have made 2/3 of the thumbprint cookies, this recipe makes somewhere near a million cookies, so it is a process. I also have chicken stock going on the stove. Later today that stock will become creamy chicken and wild rice soup and I will make yeast rolls to go with it. Homemade, healthy and good for little tummies.

The fire is going, the laundry is switched and half the house is vacuumed. Next in line are the dishes, mopping, spritz cookies and cleaning the downstairs bathroom. I feel like I have so much time!

Fevers, coughs and fluff!

So I thought for sure we would make it to church, I even had the kid's clothes laid out! Alas, this morning two kids woke up with nasty wet coughs and one woke with a fever. This is the third week in a row that we are not making it, but I keep trying and maybe we will make it next Sunday and on Christmas Eve for a double header.

So with a heap of sickies, I decided we needed a special breakfast. Sometimes I get them the packets of oatmeal that have chocolate or smores or some other disgusting breakfast combo, and these are a big treat. Usually they are stuck with the old fashioned slow cooked oats made by mama or daddy with raisins or apples or honey. So this morning they begged for the sweet packets, and I had none, but I saw that jar of Fluff. Needless to say they were very pleased when mama made the regular healthy oatmeal and then swirled a spoonful of fluff and added a sprinkle of mini chips to their oatmeal. Well, at least the good part of the oatmeal got in there and I did find a use for some of the fluff :)

Saturday, December 13, 2008


The other day at the grocery store I bought something I have never purchased in all of my adult life......Marshmallow Fluff. Not one jar,but TWO! What was I thinking? I don't eat peanut butter, so I wasn't planning to whip up fluffernutters! We always have marshmallows, so it wasn't for cocoa. Such a weird thing to buy, now I need to find a use for it!

We are progressing

So, the morning got off to a rough start, lost shoes, lost coats, lost tempers....

We made it to the school, all the kids were great getting their food and eating and Haven then went to warm up. The kids did excellent singing, and as a sappy mom, I teared up watching my big girl singing. Amazing how angry you can be at them one minute, and beaming the next!

After the singing was over, we headed into the book fair and each kiddo got a book, even Declan who was playing the part of a Kelley today! Headed back for the raffle, somehow missed when they called our name and left to drive Declan home. Surprise surprise when we came home and there was a prize waiting for us! Our kind neighbors dropped it off for us :)

I have already made a batch of meringues and I have a batch of sugar cookies and jam thumbprints chilling in the fridge. Soon I will begin cutting and baking the sugar cookies, I figure jam prints can wait until tomorrow.

Dinner tonight is super simple, I grabbed some pulled pork out of the freezer and will serve it with salad and homemade steak fries. Yummy!

Anyone else worried

that I have been up since 3 am?

Friday, December 12, 2008

First day off

So today was the start of my Christmas break. I still have FT school for a week and a half, but my classes and PT school are done!

So this morning after dropping Gray off, I went to two grocery stores to start gathering the goodies for the holiday company. I came home, finished my grading and went to pick up Maggie and Gray. Turned out Grant's mom was stuck at the doctor, so I grabbed him as well and took the three preschoolers home for lunch. They were really well behaved and played while I made meatballs for dinner and did some straightening. Em came with Killi, took the littles and left Killi to play, and she and Maggie should be back for dinner later.

All I have left to do are some postings and a little grading, plus I must get on making fudge and meringues!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Trying hard to slow down!

It is weird for me to have so much downtime!

Today has been quiet, and while I have a call and some papers to grade, I don't have much on my plate. Tomorrow I will finish my grading, do laundry, make more cookies and maybe start wrapping presents. While I am looking forward to the weeks off, it is sometimes hard for me to relax, but I am going to try!

The early bird

I woke up early this morning and decided to come downstairs and take advantage of the quiet. Soon enough the kids will be up and the morning hubbub will start. Two girlies need to eat, make lunch, pack up and get dolled up for school. One boy who will be sleepy and a little grumpy will need to eat and get dressed.

I got my morning work done last night, so I plan to take the wet ride out to the farm this morning to get the weekly milk. I am hoping the hubby will do the dishes, while I am gone, so that when I get back I can run to the doctor and grade some papers. Tonight I have a faculty call, but I only have to talk for a few minutes :)

PT school is over, well except for all the papers I need to grade! Tomorrow I will stay home and make cookies and do all sorts of good, homey, things.

Off to pull out a flank steak for dinner, we are having it on salad for supper. I should also get a jump on making the kid's lunches.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Oh the joys of rain

So I went to bed at sleep at 8:30, and I still am sleepy!

I need to get off my butt and do the dishes and vacuum, then off to run some errands in the doom and gloom.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Goodbye old friend.....

Today,while making meringues, my trusty ole hand mixer died. I have had that mixer for 10 years and I remember buying it at CVS by our old apartment for 9.99. I loved that hand mixer, it worked well and it was small. Since its demise, I have had to break out my big stand mixer to make the sugar cookies, not that I don't like the stand mixer, it is just big and bulky and not as easy as the hand mixer. I guess I will start shopping around.

Snuggles and hugs

Gray and I have had a quiet morning. I did the dishes, we watched a movie and Grayson shared loads of snuggles and hugs. Then I made some more meringues shaped like Christmas trees with peppermint, a special request from Brittan.

We just finished lunch and I am going to start some laundry and sugar cookies. It has been a sweet and soft day, one that was much needed.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Already in bed

So it is 8:30 and I am snuggled into my bed. I am so happy to be warm and comfy, and soon I will drift off to sleep. A much needed early night!

Gone to trash

So Friday our trash can disappeared, which I thought was strange. I left a message for the trash company and they called back this morning and said we were six months, no. So I pulled up all the cleared checks and gave them the numbers and dates and am waiting for them to call back and tell me when I can have my trash can back. Here is the thing, I never knew there was an issue since there were no notices and no calls, if they had sent a notice, I would have straightened this out BEFORE they took my trash can away, but I thought all was swell since I paid the bill and they cashed the check.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Hot tip!

When you are usually spoiled and your husband gives baths/showers, you come to HATE them. Since hubby is ill, I knew I would need to do shower duty. Well first I needed to clean the kid's bathroom, see I never go in there so I don't see the mess they make, it is now clean.

First Haven got in the shower, no issue there. Brittan was next, she did swell. Then comes Grayson's turn. He doesn't like showers, he likes baths.... I hate giving baths.

So here comes the hot tip.....tell the four year old he is a baby elephant. We have a hand help shower thing, so he climbed in, and I sprayed his feet, then his tushie and worked my way up to his hair which is what he was dreading. It worked out great! He thought it was fun, it was super fast and I have a clean boy. Sad that this was the most exciting part of my day!

Another one bites the dust

Seems husband came home and has a sick tummy too. Super!

Plus he never stopped at the store, which meant I had to get dressed and go out in the bitter, windy cold.

Now I am back home and the kiddos are resting since they are all sick. I am going to start the pot roast in a little while, but I also need to make some meringues and a chocolate pudding pie-but shhh, don't tell the kids.

The whole lot is taking a sick day

We were supposed to go to church and then up to see my niece dance. We didn't and we aren't. This family is taking a much needed sick day since the kids are all coughing and I am all stomach achy.

We had a really fun visit with my two best buddies from high school, they are twins :) I got to meet Chelle's new hubby and step son who was as cute as can be, and it was so nice to see Diane and meet her beau, it really had been too long!

After they left, Chelle, Chris and Christian flew in on a red eye from Cali and were so wiped out, my crew and I headed to bed.

Today we will be in our jammies all day long. I plan to make meringues since the kids have been requesting them, and a wise woman suggested a pot roast for dinner. Aside from some laundry and house maintenance, I will be laying low all day.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Someone put me out of my misery already

I have been complaining of a stomach ache for awhile, and I really thought I knew why I felt so terrible. Yesterday it got worse and worse, and now I think I may have had or still have some kind of bug too. I felt so terrible last night that I took a pill for my stomach ache and went to bed. At 2 am I woke up and felt really, really awful. Husband got me another stomach pill and then I came down to suffer in the living room. I have never felt or been so sick in my life, and I think I finally fell asleep around 6 am. Now the house needs to be cleaned and I really cannot even get off the couch. The kids also have their flu shots and I need to get food for dinner tonight. Thankfully husband is helping me clean up.

Friday, December 5, 2008

All we need is snow

Somehow this morning Ryan and I got most of the outside lights done. We still need to hang the super huge wreath, but we are almost there. When I got home from work, the kid's helped pick up the house a little, they ate dinner and then we all decorated the tree. I am sitting in the living room enjoying the lights and all the memories the ornaments bring back for me. After the tree decorating, the kids were set up with A Christmas Story and cups of hot cocoa. I also got to work on a paper and peanut butter kiss cookies. All that is done, it is 9 pm and I feel yucky, so I am off to bed. Tomorrow will be a full day with flu shots, a trip to the grocery store and cleaning for my friend's arrival.

Sitting tight

So I am sitting at PT school while my class takes their final. I have to say I really enjoyed having a smaller class, we only had 21 in here versus the usual 50. I felt I got to know the students, and I know that they learned a lot.

I still have a yucky tummy and sitting here working on grading is not helping. I also know that I need to stop at Target on my way home and that may be a nightmare. All I want to do is curl up in bed, but we have to decorate the tree and I need to clean up the house and on and on and on. Oh I need a day in my PJs wrapped in a blanket!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I have a serious tummy ache

So, I feel bad, really, really, really bad. My stomach is upset and just about everything makes me want to be sick. It is a terrible feeling, made worse by the coughing fits I keep having :(

We started the lights outside, they became a nightmare. Ryan went to he store, got the tree and new lights. So tonight he will be getting the lights on the tree, and tomorrow morning before I head to work, we will put the new and easier lights up on the house. Then I will return the terrible lights to the store and use that money to buy Chrismukah presents for the littles.

Haven is at riding, dinner is cooked (thank goodness) and Ryan can do homework tonight while I fold laundry upstairs. I have two calls tonight and then I plan to indulge myself by laying in bed and watching television, with a cup of tea, delivered by my sweet husband.

Another fun note, my bestest friend from high school, Chelle, is coming Saturday with her hubby and stepson....and she is bringing her twin sister Diane and her boyfriend! I haven't seen Diane in about six years, crazy since we all live in the DC metro area, and it will be fun to catch up, if the kids stay quiet that is!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Busy weekend plans

So we are in the mad rush towards Christmas. All of the outside decorations are done with the exception of the train,lights and wreath which will go up in the morning. My plan for tomorrow is to get the living situated so we can grab a tree tomorrow evening after the kids get home.

I also have some more cookies to make, since Chelle, her new hubby and stepson are visiting on Saturday. I am so excited, and want the house to be super festive and warm. I plan on having it all lite up, roaring fire and a yummy dinner, either homemade pizza or roasted veggies. Then Sunday we have church and will head up to see my niece dance in The Nutcracker. My parents will be there as well, so it will be fun for the kids.

Now I need to get ready for class tonight.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Chanukah Christmas Gifts

So, we go to this cool church where we celebrate, well, EVERYTHING! I love that my kids get to explore so many aspects of world religions, I think it will help them discover their true beliefs. This year we are leaping on the Fallon's Chanukah bandwagon. See my father's side of the family is Jewish, but we never really celebrated except when we were at my grandparents for Easter/Passover, when we were only in it for the money that was hidden with the Matzo and we still had our Easter baskets and eggs.

This year, my dad is bringing his dad's menorah and they will be here the first night of Chanukah-interestingly the night after we celebrate Christmas with my sister. We will eat a traditional meal (thanks Em) and my dad will read the kids the story of Chanukah and they will get a gift. The funny part is that Em and I started buying some of the gifts today and a few were Christmas themed. So we are blending the holidays....maybe a dreidel will end up in the stockings :)

Somehow we made it!

We made it down to pictures on time, kids were dressed in their holiday best, and we were all set.

Then we went to do the first set and Haven started, yes OLDEST. Ughh. Then we had a break in the middle and went into the room with the Christmas tree set up. Grayson was trying so hard that he had that "I am smiling so hard it looks like I am going to bite you!" face as only small children have when told to smile. He also kept lifting his chin up, he is so strange. Brittan was doing as told, sitting and smiling. Haven was being a pain in the arse, looking all over, not following directions, etc. Needless to say, the picture I ended up getting is of all of them looking at a story book. Yep, no one looking at the camera, no sweet faces to admire, just tops of heads.

Then we went to dinner with the Fallons and it took a very long time. The kids were all pretty good, especially since it was late and they had to wait awhile. As soon as we got in the car to come home, I told my girls that it was home and homework, then bed. What does my darling oldest say, "Uh then we don't get any TV time!" So I yelled at her that we just ate dinner with her friends, and that she is absurdly lucky and spoiled and blessed and that she should be thankful for the evening she had and on and on and on.......

Why oh why is that child so trying?

Blowin' wind

So, Gray and I ran our errands and found some cute little goodies for the girls, as well as black pants for pictures tonight and a few other odds and ends. Em and Maggie met up with us, which was great except the littles decided that Kohls was the place to run amok! Oh well, we reigned them in, got the heck out of there and went to the park where they ate lunch and played for a bit. It got cold, we came home and I decided that now was a super time to set up the outside decorations-what was I thinking? Last year we put a blow up santa in a plane, a blow up big frosty, a moving reindeer, some oversized bulbs and a train. I added a blow up polar bear this year, so I wanted to see how it would work out. We had everything in the big flower bed by the garage, but it seems we have outgrown that area :)

So far, I have the big bulbs lining the walkway by the garage and have the three big blow ups lined up, plane, bear, snowman. I think the train will have to go in front of the living room windows, so now I need more big bulbs or another type of light, maybe some snowflakes?

I am off to tame Gray's hair,pack up the christmas outfits and go wait in line for the girls.

So it is all laid out and I checked that everything works. The frosty has been staked, the others will be staked tomorrow and the train will be put out tomorrow as well. Now all I need is for Ryan to take down the trellis and put up the big wreath:)

The overwhelming sense of dread

What could bring this on so early in the morning? It's pictures with all three kids at 4:20 this afternoon. That's right, I am picking the girls up, driving to the picture place, changing their clothes and hoping that the place is running close to on time. Then we will need to wait for the pictures or I may just pick them up on Wednesday when I head down to get milk. Of course it will be dinner time when we are done, so if they all cooperate I promised them dinner out (it's kid's day). So the dread is there, I am not looking forward to wrangling a bunch of cranky kids in the afternoon wearing Christmas outfits. I just want one decent shot.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Just not healthy

So I am watching a show and a commercial came on for Bob Evans Deep Dish Dinners. How unhealthy can one meal get???? A biscuit covered in mashed potatoes topped with gravy, fried chicken and cheese! The best part is...this heart attack is only $5.99, what a steal. You would need to eat salads for a week straight.

Dusting off my skills

See my new header, I made it. See long before I was a professor, back in the good ole days, I was in advertising. Although never a designer, I was an art director along with media planner/buyer and an account manager-I changed jobs a lot. See, being an art director is a great gig if you have an eye for design, but not the best skills. Basically I had the vision and explained it to the designer who then created the ad, I loved that gig. So today I dusted off my very flawed design skills and made the banner. It didn't come out as I saw it in my minds eye, curse of art direction, but I am pretty pleased since I haven't really designed in about 10 years!

It's beginning to feel like Christmas!

So almost all of the inside decorations are done and I am getting ready to bake off the first batch of shortbread in my 12 days of Christmas pan. Work is slowing down, this Friday will be my last one at PT school, and I have two Wednesdays left and the exams to grade. I feel more relaxed, and know that the only big things left are to put up the outside decorations, send cards, do the tree and wrap!

My parents and my sister's family will be here on the 20th to celebrate Christmas a little early. Then Ryan's mom arrives on the 23rd, and I will put her to work on the 24th baking a birthday cake for Ryan. Ryan's brother's and Kristen should arrive late on Christmas Day, so it will be a full week of festivities!

I love this time of year and really look forward to the weeks I have off from everything to relax and enjoy my family. It is a bonus that Ryan will be off from Christmas Eve through January 2nd, it will be great to have family time.

Off to get that first batch of cookies in the oven, as it only makes 12, I need to do at least 4 batches.

A new day

So, we got up a little late, but Brittan made it off to school without any stress and the other kids and I are still in our Pjs. So far, the dishes are done, the stove cleaned and the house vacuumed. In a few, I will go make some coffee and switch the laundry. My big plan is to sort the clean clothes and get the kid's stuff ready to be folded and put away. I also need to go through the rest of the decorations to figure out what we need and what can be put back up.

Tomorrow Gray and I will get the milk and the kid's have Christmas pictures are 4:30,FUN!